Tag Archive | 1930’s

“The Girl from the Tyne” by Melody Sachs

I requested to review Melody Sachs first novel, “The Girl from the Tyne”.  This is her first novel and I enjoyed the book very much.  The story begins in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1932.  Jack Wood lives with his Mum and is happy with his life.  He owns a business that is prospering in spite of the depression.  On this particular evening, he is heading to a dance in town.  All of the young folks are there and the bands are swinging.  There is a dance contest and he is smitten with Alice Rooney, one of the winners of the contest.  He gets his courage together and asks her to dance.  They finish the evening with each other.  Alice is a forward young lady and entices Jack, which has consequences.  Jack decides to do the right thing and marry her even though their families are nothing alike.  Alice’s family is crude, rude and smarmy; while Jack’s is the son of a veterinarian.  His family is good, supportive and loving.

Jack and Alice have a volatile relationship.  Alice’s mouth is crude and rude, just like the rest of her family.  Their daughter, Lizzie, bears the brunt of Alice’s wrath.  Nothing she does is right, she is screamed at, embarrassed in front of her friends and their parents, yet Lizzie tries to be quiet and not anger her mother.  The story continues as we see Lizzie growing up and becoming a lovely young lady in spite of the abusive relationship with her mother.

I really did enjoy reading about Lizzie.  However, it was very hard to read the abusive dialogue that Alice subjected Lizzie to, and I suffered with her.  No one was immune from her wrath and everyone walked on eggs in order not to upset Alice and cause Lizzie more trouble.  The thing I enjoyed most about this novel is the time period written about.  I wish Ms. Sachs much success with her writing.

I received a Kindle copy of this book from NetGalley.com.

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“Woman in the Shadows” by Jane Thynne

“Woman in the Shadows” by Jane Thynne is the third book in the Clara Vine Series that I have read.  Jane Thynne has become one of my very favorite authors.  Not only is her subject matter one that I love to read about, but her style of writing keeps me coming back for more.  I am so glad that she is expanding this series to five books.  I delight in reading about prominent characters who were engaged in the pre-World War II cat and mouse games of espionage.  I can picture myself in Berlin along with Clara, so vividly does Ms. Thynne describe the surroundings.  I feel the intrigue, the helplessness, the terror that must have been part of most persons’ lives during this time in Germany.  I fear for Clara as she does her duty for the Crown and possibly provides information that will someday save many lives.

Clara Vine is a young woman, part English, part Jewish German.  Her very existence is in peril as long as she lives in Berlin and hobnobs with the Reich’s top echelon.  She must watch every word, every nuance, every look, and every movement, to make sure she does not give herself away.  As an actress, is she acting the part in her own life, or just when she is around the Nazi hierarchy?  Whom can she trust?  Whom can she talk to?  Who knows the truths?

In England, the titles of Ms. Thynne’s books are different from those offered in the United States.  For instance, this same book I am reviewing has the title, “The Winter Garden” in the U.K.  This may be confusing for some, but I have researched the books and am aware of the differences.  I highly recommend this series and I will continue to read all that Ms. Thynne writes.

I received a print copy of this book from NightOwlReviews.com in return for my honest review.